Winnamuck Mill at Bingham
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The story of the Winnamuck parallels many "famous" mines in mining districts all across the west. The mine was at first fabulously successful, but within a few short years after its was payed out (after 1875 in this case), the local owners (with full knowledge of its diminishing returns) pawned it off on Eastern or foreign investors based on its success. The new owners were never able to get much out of it after its days of glory. While the Winnamuck did ship regular amounts of various types of ore, it never really made money for any of its owners. The name comes up regularly in newspaper accounts, but always as a mention of its glory days, and how each new owning group was going to duplicate the success, if they could only get the investors to send more money. "Old Reliable" over and over and over again, for another 40 years. That's why it is mentioned so often; pure promotion. After about 1905, the mill building was used by many companies to test new processes, and to act as a backup to other facilities, because it was adjacent to the railroad line, thus keeping transportation costs at a minimum. At the end of its life, it was the guys who, after developing the Ohio Copper mine and selling out to Heinze, took their money and organized the Ute Copper company. They were somewhat successful, mostly due to improved pumping techniques in a wet mine, and improved metallurgy to process the ore.
(The spelling of Winnamuck changed over the years. In earlier times, circa 1870s and 1880s, the newspapers usually used "Winamuck" as the spelling. After the 1880s, the spelling was usually as "Winnamuck," with "Winnemuck" being used occasionally. This web site uses Winnamuck, to match the spelling on the only known photograph of the mill.)
The Winnamuck mill at Bingham was adjacent to the D&RGW Bingahm depot. Its large roof is distinctive in photos, and having a date that the building existed is helpful in dating photographs of Bingham.
The Winnamuck mill and Rio Grande depot were located at the mouth of Freeman Gulch. Marion Dunn wrote in his book, "Bingham Canyon," on page 11 that Freeman Gulch took its name from the death of three Freeman brothers who had died as the result of a cave-in on the old placer workings in the 1860s. Also that this was early enough that there was not yet a Bingham cemetery, and the three brothers were buried in a common unmarked grave near the Revere switch on the Rio Grande railroad.
(Read more about the history of the name of Freeman Gulch)
In the immediate vicinity were the lower terminals of the Highland Boy aerial tram, and the United States aerial tram. Both terminals were located to take advantage of railroad transportation. At this same location, a horse tram was completed to reach the mines in Upper Bingham, and in 1900 this horse tram was rebuilt completely to become the Copper Belt railroad, which interchanged with D&RGW at Bingham.
The Winnamuck mill and smelter (or "furnace") had been completed in August 1871, and served the Winnamuck mine, which had been opened in 1870 as one of the earliest workable mines in the district. The original Winnamuck claim was filed in March 1866, but wasn't successfully worked until 1870. The Winnamuck was one of the first combination mill and smelter operations in the district, and one of the earliest smelters in all of the territory, and was processing ore from their own mine, along with most of the ores that were coming from the other mines in the camp. The concentrated ores were then shipped to new smelters in Utah and back east. Due to the type of ore, and the difficulty of processing it, the Winnamuck smelter shut down in 1875.
"Before the Hanauer smelter was even thought of, however, the old Winnamuck smelter was erected in 1873 to treat the ores of the Bingham mine bearing that name. The plant reduced a large amount of high grade ore to bullion, proving extremely profitable. It was sold with the mine by Ellsworth Daggett to a Holland company, and in the early '80s it was abandoned." (Salt Lake Herald, July 25, 1903, "Smelters Of Other Days")
"Winnemuck smelting works are situated in Bingham canyon, on the terminus of the Bingham Canyon railroad. They have two reverberatory furnaces; a 60 horsepower steam engine and boiler; one No. 4 and two No. 5 Root blowers; eight roasting stalls, roasting kilns and one dust chamber of iron." (Salt Lake Herald, January 1, 1884, "Geology Of Utah," page 4 of 4)
The Winnamuck mine was the star producer and one of several in the Bingham district that produced millions in lead-silver ores. This era of lead-silver mines followed the era of placer gold mines that had produced $3 million in value. The Winnamuck alone produced over $3 million in lead-silver ore, while the Telegraph, Jordan, South Galena, Brooklyn and Stewart mines (in Upper Bingham) produced $1 million each. (Salt Lake Tribune, November 20, 1890)
The early success of the Winnamuck mine and smelter during 1873-1874 brought great profit to the owners, and a lasting reputation that was recalled in the local press for the following 40 years. But the type of ore changed as the mine was expanded downward, and water was encountered. Later development was stalled because of the water problem, and the lack of machinery with the capacity to keep the water level low enough to allow successful mining. A report from 1875 stated that water was encountered at a depth of 130 feet, or about 83 feet below the level of the creek in the canyon at the mine's mouth. Drifts, or side tunnels, were driven hoping to remove more high quality ore, but the ore vein ran out and the company found that only by driving deeper could they continue to operate with a profit. Later operations, with better pumping capabilities, drove down to the 400 foot level, but at that level the water proved too much for the pumps and mining stopped. That same 1875 report stated that in 1872, the mine produced 700 pounds of lead and 52 ounces of silver for every ton of the 3,900 tons of ore processed. In 1873, the amounts were 490 pounds of lead and 65.5 ounces of silver, for 4,400 tons of ore processed. Very rich ore, and very profitable.
The Winnamuck mill was remodeled several times from the mid 1890s through to about 1907 as various companies either leased the mill, or purchased the mine and mill, hoping to duplicate the success of the early owners.
The following comes from a 2005 report by EPA's Denver Region office:
The mill was erected at the site of the Winnamuck Smelter, one of the first smelters in Bingham Canyon. The mill first opened in 1877 to experiment with stamps, jigs, and shaking tables. Leaching was also tried in 1878 with both raw ore and ore after chloridizing roasting. An old slag dump was leased and much value was recovered. [Census, 1885]. The Census commented "The results from this, as from most other old slag dumps, were not flattering to early smelters."
One source indicates that it was operating in the 1870s and 1880s milling lead/silver ores. The mill was probably treating the lead/silver ores from the Winnamuck Mine. It was located approximately 100 feet south of Bingham Creek near the intersection of Freeman Gulch with the main canyon. Billings  reported that Ohio Copper either leased or purchased the Winnamuck Mill in 1903, and operated it from 1904 to 1907, using it as an experimental mill to work out operational details for the Ohio Copper Company mill whose construction began in 1907 at Lark. In 1903, the capacity was 125 tons/day of second class ore. First class ore was sent directly to the smelter in Midvale. The mill was described as opposite the Denver and Rio Grande depot in lower Bingham [Billings, 1952]. The Ute Copper Company acquired the property in 1907 and appears to have continued its operation. The mill had a capacity of 200 tons of ore per day by 1911, and was treating ores from the Utah Consolidated Mining Company and the Bingham Mines Company. The Sanborn maps of 1898, 1902, 1907 and 1913 detail the increasing size of the mill’s waste dump to a point where it is held back by an 18 foot cribbing wall in 1907. In 1913, the mill was leased to Werner Ziegler. The mill appears to have been operated from sometime before 1880 to after 1913. It is not shown in the 1929 Sanborn maps. [SAIC, 1991]. Another source indicates that the mill burned in June, 1919 [Moore, 1992].
Kennecott  reports a similar, but different, history of this mill. It was located at the same site at the Winnamuck Smelter, approximately 1/4 mile east of Kennecott’s former North Ore Shoot head frame and on the south margin of Bingham Canyon. The smelter property was bought by the Amsterdam Company in 1876, and renovated into the Winnamuck Mill in 1877 to process lead and silver ores. In 1882, the mill was modified to work oxidized gold ore and later added cyanide plants. In 1904, the mill was remodeled to work porphyry copper ore. The Winnamuck Mill was intermittently operated between 1877 and 1912. The mill was also referred to as the Ohio Mill after it was bought by Ohio Copper Company in 1905. It was dismantled and the machinery was sold in 1917 and 1918. The building was destroyed by fire in 1919. [Kennecott, 1997]
Kennecott  also indicates that in 1896, a second mill, owned by S. B. Milner, was moved across the gulch to the Winnamuck property. The name of this mill is not known. It started as a gold extracting plant and was later converted to a concentrating mill. The mill was moved to the Winnamuck Mill site to process low grade ore from the Winnamuck Mine. The mill could concentrate 50 - 125 tons per day.
Kennecott reports that during the operation of this mill from 1877 - 1913, 140,000 tons of lead-silver ore was milled producing 122,500 tons of tails containing 1841 tons of lead. [Kennecott 104e, 1991]. A 1994 Kennecott map indicates that the site of this mill has not been subsumed by the Bingham Pit or dumps. The site is now in the Bingham Canyon railroad corridor and a portion of the site is buried under waste rock dumps. [Kennecott, 1997]. Because the site is currently non-existent or inaccessible to residents, workers, and wildlife, it has been given "No Action" status for CERCLA response purposes. This site was closed out by the Bingham Creek ROD (Report of Decision) of Sept. 1998. (Oquirrh Mountains Mining and the Environment by Eva J. Hoffman, U. S. Environmental Protection Agency, Denver, April 21, 2005)
"The Winnemuck smelter built by Bristol & Daggett in Bingham Canyon was operated successfully and profitably until 1874." (Salt Lake Tribune, September 20, 1936)
(William B. Bristol, Bingham Canyon, and Ellsworth Daggett, Omaha)
(Read more about the Winnamuck smelter)
The fourteen claims of the Winnamuck mining group "takes in nearly all the ground on which the Rio Grande depot and yards are located." (Salt Lake Herald, February 14, 1896)
The location of the Winnamuck mill is shown on sheet 3 of the 1907 Sanborn fire insurance map of Bingham. The mill was located almost directly across the tracks from the D&RGW Bingham depot, which was at about 5,900 feet elevation above sea level.
"The most important mines in this canyon are the Winnamuck and the Tiewaukee, with the adjacent groups belonging to them. The Winnamuck was discovered in 1867 by Mormon farmers, who ran a tunnel into a body of soft, oxidized, ocher ore. This ore, though rich, was thrown over the dumps, only the nodules of galena being saved. In the year of its discovery the mine was bought by Bristol & Daggett for $15,000. In August, 1871, smelting was begun. The mine was sold in 1872 to an English company for $300,000 and 50,000 shares of the stock. Smelting proved so unprofitable that in 1875 it was abandoned and the ore sold. In 1876 the property was bought by an Amsterdam company. [As of 1885] Smelting has never been resumed, though fairly successful attempts were made in 1877 to concentrate the ore by stamps, jigs, and shaking tables. Leaching, both raw and after a chloridizing-roasting, was tried in 1878 with no success. Considerable prospecting was done in 1876, but since that time the mine has been worked most of the time on lease." (Statistics and Technology of the Precious Metals; U. S. Department of the Interior, Census Office, 1885, page 410)
March 31, 1866
The Winnamuck claim was first filed on March 31, 1866. (USGS Professional Paper 38, "Economic Geology of the Bingham Mining District", page 84)
May 23, 1871
"The Winnamuck mine, situated in Bingham canyon, is the first instance in Utah in which a final survey has been ordered and approved by the Surveyor general, under the act of Congress of July 26, 1866, to the end that a patent from the United States may issue therefor." (Salt Lake Tribune, May 23, 1871)
July 11, 1873
"Winnamuck Mine, Elllsworth Daggett, superintendent. This is the most extensively developed mine in Utah. The shafts, inclines, tunnels, drifts and levels, that have been run on the mine, amounting in the aggregate to over three thousand feet. the property was incorporated in London for two millions. Most of the stock is held in Holland. One of the largest smelters in the Territory is built at the mine. A tramway, about one hundred feet in length, runs from the mouth of the tunnel to the smelter below. The ores of this mine, owing to the facilities which they have for working them, can be reduced at a less expense than those of any other mine in the Territory. The works are now reducing about 500 tons per month. The Superintendent has commenced the publication of a series of interesting articles to the Engineering and Mining Journal, on the "Economical results of smelting in Utah." We would commend their perusal to some of our Utah smelters." (Salt Lake Herald, July 11, 1873)
April 4, 1874
Among the principal mines is the Winnamuck. It is without doubt the best paying mine in Utah. The location is on the northern belt at the terminus of the railway. It was purchased in 1870, by Daggett & Bristol, of New Haven; purchase price, $13,000. These parties built furnaces and operated the mines for two years, realizing a large profit on their investment. They then sold to the present company for half a million. The mine has reached depth of 800 feet, having 1,850 feet of tunnels. All the ores extracted from this mine are smelted in the company's furnaces, which have a capacity of thirty tons daily. The gross production for 1873 was upward of $800,000, and the net nearly $400,000. Ellsworth Daggett is the superintendent. (Inter-Ocean [Chicago], April 4, 1874)
After the Winnamuck smelter closed in 1875, the Winnamuck mine remained as a working property. Throughout the 1870s and 1880s, there was regular mention in the local press about miners working at the Winnamuck mine, but no mention of the mill and smelter. Also, during the mid 1880s, a company called Winnamuck Silver Mining Company was on the trial calendar of the Third District Court.
In 1877, work in the Winnamuck mine was suspended by the mining company's Dutch owners when they organized a new company on January 1, 1877 as a Dutch company, to purchase the property and assets of the old company by foreclosure and liquidation. It was originally in incorporated in 1871 in Great Britain as the Winnamuck Silver Mining Company, with Daggett and Bristol as the local managers. In 1872, Daggett left the company and the Dutch owners sent their own manager to Utah. By April 1879, the mine had been inactive for two years, and there were rumors that Mr. Daggett was to return as the local manager. (Salt Lake Tribune, April 3, 1879)
The purchase of the old company by the new company was completed on June 27, 1877. (Salt Lake Tribune, June 26, 1879)
April 3, 1879
"The Winnamuck Mine -- Change in the Management of the Celebrated Property -- Among the leading mines in Utah until recently was the Winnamuck of Bingham. Under the management of Ellsworth Daggett, the mine paid large dividends, and was considered by mining men to be one of our most permanent mines. In the early history of this mine its English owners mortgaged the property to a Dutch company for the purchase money. The Winnamuck company having been incorporated under the laws of Great Britain, went into liquidation and the property passed into the hands of the Amsterdam party. In 1872, Arie Pinedo came to Utah as financial agent of the company, during the management of Mr. Daggett. In 1874, Daggett left and Pinedo took full charge. Since this change too place, Mr. Pinedo purchased for his company several mines and prospects, but work on the Winnamuck has been suspended for the last two years. The company not realizing as formerly, began to investigate their affairs here, and the result is that a new manager named J. W. F. Von Enselhat (J. H. F. Van Enschut), has been named." (Salt Lake Tribune, April 3, 1879)
April 4, 1879
"Notice -- To All It May Concern -- Take notice that Mr. Arie Pinedo, who has heretofore acted as Agent of the Winnamuck Silver Mining Company (Limited) and also Agent of the Maatschappij tot Exploitatic van Zilvermijnen gevestigd to Amsterdam, Holland, has been, and is hereby suspended from his functions as such Agent, and has from date hereof ceased to represent either of said Companies, or to transact business for or on behalf of either Companies. By order of the Companies. By J. H. F. Van Enschut, Its Attorney in fact." (Salt Lake Herald, April 4, 1879)
(Translation: "Maatschappij tot Exploitatic van Zilvermijnen gevestigd to Amsterdam" -- Company to Exploit Silver Mines Established in Amsterdam)
The trial in Third District Court, "Winnemuck Silver Mining Company vs. Arie Pinedo, et. al." was set for June 20, 1880. The suit was filed as early as September 1879. (Salt Lake Herald, September 27, 1879; May 11, 1880)
The mine was reported in August 1880 as being in full production. It was reported in March 1882 as being worked under lease by individual operators.
A table included in an 1885 report to Congress (Statistics and Technology of Precious Metals, page 250) showed just one stamp mill, with 20 stamps, working in Bingham Canyon. A table on page 272 of the same report showed five smelters working in Utah, with the "New York and Utah reduction works" being the only one in the Bingham district. Page 527 showed the reducing mills at the Jordan mine, and at the Stewart mine.
July 29, 1887
A new "Winamuck Mining Company" was organized and articles of incorporation were filed. The organizers were Jones and Watson, who had been working the mine under lease for several years. (Salt Lake Herald, July 30, 1887)
May 16, 1893
"The slag from the old Winnemuck slag dump is being steadily shipped to the smelters in the valley, and is being sent down at a rate of two or three cars per day." (Salt Lake Herald, May 16, 1893)
February 21, 1896
"It is stated on good authority that the new owners of the Winnamuck mine at Bingham are contemplating the erection of a mill with a daily capacity of 200 tons." (Salt Lake Herald, February 21, 1896)
March 8, 1896
The Rio Grande Western laid a spur track to serve the Winnamuck mine. There were some legal difficulties because the track crossed a strip of land, 12 feet wide, that lay between railroad property at Bingham, and Winnamuck property. (Salt Lake Herald, March 8, 1896, "Trouble at Bingham")
March 12, 1896
"The Winnamuck people have recently purchased the Bingham gold extraction mill of S. B. and C. W. Milner, and have moved it to their Bingham mine, where it will be used in the concentration of the low-grade ores in this property and the mineral in the Winnamuck dump. The mill has a capacity of 100 tons of ore daily." (Salt Lake Herald, March 12, 1896)
April 18, 1896
"The Winnamuck mine, at Bingham, has from 600 to 700 tons of ore on the dump awaiting the completion of the new mill, which is to be in operation by the middle of next week. This mill will treat 100 tons of ore daily, and is said to be one of the best mills in the gulch. First-class ore is also being sacked, and as soon as the concentrating ore is out of the way shipments of higher grade ore will be made." (Salt Lake Herald, April 18, 1896)
May 3, 1896
"Col. Sowers of the Winnamuck at Bingham said yesterday that the mill on the property would be ready to start up this week, and that the output of the property would be advanced as rapidly as the mill would afford. Developments have resulted in most gratifying disclosures to date, and the Winnamuck promises to become one of the leading producers in the present season. The Bingham Bulletin says that with the exception of a few finishing touches the new Winnamuck mill is ready to start up, and it is the intention to put it in motion today (Sunday May 3), if possible. By Sunday or Monday it will be in complete running order. In its present capacity it will treat from fifty to sixty tons daily, but with addition of concentrators, it can at any time be increased to 125 tons capacity. The ore bin was being filled yesterday (Saturday May 2), and there are thousands of tons of second-class ore in and about the old mine awaiting treatment." (Salt Lake Herald, May 3, 1896)
May 13, 1896
The "Winnemuck" mill was shipping a car load of concentrates daily. (Salt Lake Herald, May 13, 1896)
June 25, 1896
"New Depot For Bingham -- The Winnamuck company of Bingham has given the R. G. W. Railway company a tract of land 60x100 feet for depot purposes, and yesterday surveyors were at work staking off the ground for the new buildings, which will consist of a tasty depot building and a commodious warehouse, which will be erected about midway between the Winnamuck office and mill. The new depot will be about 1,000 feet down the canyon from the company's old box-car ticket and express office, and, when completed will "fill a long-felt want." (Salt Lake Herald, June 25, 1896)
During August 1896, there were numerous newspaper items stating that the Winnamuck mine had stopped production, waiting for better metal prices. Only development work was being pursued.
September 4, 1896
"Herald readers have been kept well informed concerning the work that has been done in development of the Old Winnamuck mine, in Bingham, since this one famous property passed into the hands of its new purchasers early in the spring of this year."..."This mine, which has been a great producer in its day, had to be cleaned out and retimbered before work was resumed; and this was delayed until a new hoist and other machinery were put in; and even then various hindrances were met with, water was encountered, and the slump in lead made the outlook more than blue. But persistency and perseverance will have its reward; however, and on Wednesday the men broke into a fine, large body of high-grade galena ore on the 200 foot level."..."This strike will place its owners in a position so that they can from now on make shipments of good pay ore, or store the mineral in their bins, just as they see fit." (Salt Lake Herald, September 4, 1896)
During January 1897, it was reported on several occasions that the Winnamuck mine was not in production, with the ore only being shipped from in development work, blocking out the ore body. Without ore being mined in quantity, the mill was not being run. Production was waiting for "bond" from a group of New York and British investors, taken in September 1896, to expire in March. Also, flowing water had been encountered at the 300-foot level and was delaying further development work. During this period throughout late December 1896 through late March 1897, the Winnamuck was referred to regularly as "Old Reliable" from the days of the earlier mine in the 1870s that had shipped $3 million in silver.
Throughout late 1896 and through mid May 1897, there were numerous references to a pending sale that itself depended on a "bond" being "taken," then coming due or expiring. Persons in New York and Great Britain were mentioned regularly as the eventual owners. At the same time, three local mining men, John G. Logan, J. F. Woodman and "Col." Percy M. Sowers, were always mentioned as the majority owners, both before the sale in 1897, and after, having purchased the mine in February 1896 from its Dutch owners. The sale included the Wasatch and Dixon mines, adjacent and connected to the Winnamuck by underground tunnels. As a side note, John G. Logan died of mysterious circumstances on August 8, 1897, while staying in the Walker House hotel.
Following the sale, and throughout the following three to four months, there were regular reports in the local press about the wonderful work that was being done, and that it would "soon" be one of the great producers of Bingham. Lots of development work going on, with new tunnels and shafts, but production did not begin until August 1897 when 300 tons were shipped as concentrates from the mill. The same amount was shipped during September. More inclines, tunnel and shafts were being completed at the same time.
During October 1897, the Winnamuck mine shipped 350 tons of good ore, and shipments for November were expected to be the same. (Salt Lake Herald, November 2, 1897)
In late January 1898, the Winnamuck mine shut down after A. H. Borman, who was providing the funds for the current expansion, decided that the expenses did not justify the outcome. By that time $40,000 had been spent, but Borman decided not to purchase the mine at the agreed price of $175,000, and the mine shut down due to lack of funds. However, the owners kept the pumps operating to keep the water in the mine under control. On January 29, the superintendent of the Winnamuck mine, David J. Cook, left Utah to take a position in California. (Salt Lake Herald, January 28, 1898; January 30, 1898; February 17, 1898)
A shipment of 100 tons came from the Winnamuck as it resumed production during April 1898, after the cloud of ownership had been raised. This was the first ore shipped since the shut down in late January. Because the mine was "at the foot of the hills," water in the mine was a problem below the 400-foot level, and a new pump had been ordered to be installed at that level. (Salt Lake Herald, May 9, 1898; June 5, 1898; January 1, 1899)
The Winnamuck was shipping its ore, 300 tons, to the Dewey mill instead of using its own mill, immediately adjoining its mine opening. The 300 tons of crude ore produced 150 tons of shipping product. In March 1899, the 300 tons was still in the process of being shipped to the Dewey mill. (Salt Lake Herald, September 18, 1898; March 27, 1899)
(Read more about the Dewey mill)
This seems to indicate that while the mine was in full production, the Winnamuck mill was out of commission. Possibly, the Winnamuck mill was not properly equipped to process the ore coming from the Winnamuck mine, and the company did not have the financial resources to upgrade the mill.
April 16, 1899
A sheriff's sale was ordered by the District Court to settle a claim that arose with the sale of the Winnamuck mine in February 1896 to its current owners, including the majority owner James Woodman and others. The sale was completed and the property transferred on November 27, 1899. (Salt Lake Herald, April 16, 1899; May 5, 1899; November 28, 1899)
The newspaper item is a notice, and the results of the sheriff's sale on May 2, 1899, and includes a full list of the mining properties and claims to be sold. The Winnamuck mill is not listed as an asset of the Winnamuck mine, although it may be assumed as such. Winnamuck No. 1 and Winnamuck No. 2 were specifically mentioned as being part of the mining claims being sold. It is possible that the mill was situated on one of the two mining claims. The successful bidder was William C. Staines, for a reported $18,421.
The suit had been filed in March 1899 by a Utah subsidiary of the original Dutch company, claiming a quarter interest in the mine. This muddle all stemmed from the time in 1879 when Arie Pinedo was fired as agent for the Dutch company for having used, without authority, company funds to purchase the other mines. Limited research suggests that Pinedo personally retained a quarter interest in the mine, and the Dutch company claimed that quarter interest, and won.
In a review of mining activity in the state of Utah, the Winnamuck mill was shown as shipping 50 tons of concentrates per day. (Salt Lake Tribune, January 1, 1900)
January 6, 1900
The Winnamuck mill was being rehabilitated and would soon be processing "dump ore" and second class ore, which was stored in drifts within the mine, or which had already been blocked out and was ready to be stoped. (Deseret Evening News, January 6, 1900; Salt Lake Tribune, January 7, 1900)
After being idle for more than a year due to legal problems, throughout 1900 there were regular rumors that the Winnamuck mine and mill were being brought into good shape and would start producing any day.
In June 1900, a sample of ore from the Winnamuck mine was sent to Denver to determine its lead and zinc content, and to develop possible processing methods at the Winnamuck mill. A process was developed and tested at the mill, and found to be successful. (Salt Lake Tribune, June 6, 1900)
May 19, 1901
A new 1,500 feet of tramway was under construction between the Tiewaukee dump and the Winnamuck mill, with completion planned for "next week" and the mill with its new machinery was expected to be ready to run as soon as ore could be delivered. (Salt Lake Tribune, May 19, 1901)
(Read more about the Tiewaukee mine)
May 12, 1901
"Last Monday Manager Lathrop of the Tiewaukee mine put a force at work on the Winnamuck mill, which after several years of idleness is to be refitted and run on Tiewaukee second class ores. Two Cammatt tables and new rolls will be added. It is expected to start this month, and the mine is in shape to give it a steady run. A horse tram is being laid between mine and mill." (Salt Lake Tribune, May 12, 1901)
May 24, 1901
The Winnamuck group of 11 claims was reported as being sold to a group of Detroit investors. The purchase price was reported as $100,000. The same amount was reported as being paid for the same group's purchase of the Tiewaukee group, and $50,000 for the Dixon group. (Salt Lake Tribune, May 24, 1901)
May 29, 1901
The same Detroit syndicate of investors holding an option on the Tiewaukee property, had just taken an option on the adjacent Winnamuck property for $100,000, and a half-interest in the adjacent Dixon property for $50,000. The Tiewaukee was shipping good ore and there was no doubt that the payment would be made on the Tiewaukee option. The first payment of $25,000 was made on June 1, 1901. (Salt Lake Tribune, May 29, 1901; June 2, 1901)
(From June to December 1901 there were almost weekly reports about one, two or three carloads of concentrated Tiewaukee ore being shipped from the Winnamuck mill. Those shipments ended in December 1901 when the company gave up the lease of the Winnamuck mill. The same Detroit syndicate owned the Tiewaukee and Winnamuck mines, but possibly not the Winnamuck mill.)
June 6, 1901
The Winnamuck concentrator was fired up "this morning," with its many alterations and number of devices to increase its efficiency. The mill was processing ore from the Tiewaukee mine, with the initial run being for 85 tons, and increased to 100 tons per day. The pump at the Winnamuck mine was sending forth 120 gallons per minute, with the goal being to lower the water to the 400-foot level, where a quantity of good ore was known to be present. (Salt Lake Tribune, June 6, 1901; June 7, 1901)
June 22, 1901
"H.M. Crowther, Supt. of the Tiewaukee-Winamuck group at Bingham, reports that the Winnemuck mill was started up on the 13th with ore of good quality from the Tiewaukee." (Mining and Scientific Press, June 22, 1901, page 288)
In July 1901, it was reported that the work of rehabilitating the Winnamuck mine was progressing very slowly. The pumps being used to dewater the mine were failing due to a bad boiler, and new flues were being installed in the boiler. Surveys indicated that a good paying vein ore was near, but rock was found to be very hard, and tunnel work was progressing slowly. Ore for the mill was coming from the Tiewaukee property, and the mill was shipping about two carloads per week. (Salt Lake Herald, July 29, 1901)
September 20, 1901
Ownership of the Winnamuck mine and mill was transferred to the same group of Michigan investors who also owned the adjoining Tiewaukee mine. William C. Staines was the seller of the Winnamuck group, also acting as an agent for the same Dutch group was involved in the original sale in 1896, who had apparently retained a percentage of ownership. At the same time, a new electric motor had been delivered to the mill and would be put into operation as soon as the Telluride Power company could extend its wire from the opposite Shawmut mill. (Salt Lake Tribune, September 21, 1901, "yesterday"; Salt Lake Herald, September 21, 1901; Salt Lake Herald, September 30, 1901)
December 2, 1901
The Red Wing group had leased the Winnamuck mill, and reversed its order with the Dewey mill to process 1,000 tons of ore. The Tiewaukee Gold and Silver Mining Company had discontinued using its mill and had leased it to the Red Wing group. The Tiewaukee company would continue the development of its Tiewaukee and Winnamuck mines. The Tiewaukee company was to vacate the Winnamuck mill by December 10th and turn it over to the Red Wing group, which would begin processing ore from the Silver Hill mine. The Tiewaukee company had been using the Winnamuck mill to process second-class ore from the Tiewaukee dumps, but although money was made from ore that would otherwise be thrown away, there was not enough of it to make a profit. (Salt Lake Tribune, December 2, 1901; Salt Lake Herald, December 2, 1901; December 9, 1901)
The Red Wing group was the Red Wing Gold Mining Company, which owned 11 claims at the mouth of Markham Gulch, and along Bingham canyon to Freeman Gulch. One of the upper claims was the Silver Hill claim, where most of the development work had been for the past year. The test runs of the Red Wing ores at both the Dewey mill and the Winnamuck mill showed that they could not be milled at a profit, and the Red Wing group was reorganized. (Salt Lake Herald, December 2, 1901; December 9, 1901; February 1, 1902)
November 5, 1903
The Catrow syndicate, who is purchasing the Columbia Copper company, has also taken a lease on the old Winnamuck mill. (Salt Lake Herald, November 5, 1903)
December 29, 1903
The Winnamuck mill in Bingham Canyon was to go "into commission on next Monday" "This plant will serve the Ohio Copper company, which has leased it for a period of years, until a new plant is installed in the coming year." (Deseret News, December 29, 1903) ("next Monday" was January 5, 1904)
January 2, 1904
"An extension of the Copper Belt from its old lower terminus to the Winnemuck mill bin is being made and on its completion the Columbia's ore will begin to move." (Deseret News, January 2, 1904, "Bingham Mining Notes")
A review of the maps of the vicinity indicates that this extension was merely an additional 500 feet of track.
January 4, 1904
"...the Copper Belt railroad grade would be completed by tonight to the Winnemuck mill in lower Bingham, where the Ohio Copper company will soon commence grinding out concentrates." The opening of the mill would be delayed until later in the week due to problems with delivery of needed equipment. (Deseret News, January 4, 1904, "Grade Completed Today")
January 9, 1904
"The Ohio Copper company expected to have the Winnemuck mill in operation by now, but the day of starting has necessarily been deferred, all on account of a local firm failing to make prompt deliveries of a set of crushing rolls." (Deseret News, January 9, 1904, "Bingham Reviewed")
January 27, 1904
The Winnamuck mill is in production, reducing 150 tons daily of ore from the Ohio Copper company, from 4 percent copper, to 25 percent copper, which is then shipped to the smelter. (Salt Lake Tribune, January 27, 1904)
(Prior to the startup of the Winnamuck mill by Ohio Copper, and starting in February 1902, the Columbia company had been using the old Rogers mill in upper Bingham. The company had also used the Rogers mill for easy testing of its concentration methods. Moving to the Winnamuck would allow increased testing and greater production.) (Read more about the Rogers mill)
June 15, 1904
Ohio Copper company made its final payment of $57,500 for its purchase of the Winnamuck group. (Salt Lake Tribune, June 15, 1904)
November 30, 1904
Ohio Copper Company completed final negotiations and purchased the Winnamuck group of mines, including the mill. The purchase took place "yesterday" (Nov 30), with the purchase price reported as $50,000. While under Dutch ownership, the mine became flooded after reaching the 400 foot level, and the owners were unable to continue work. At the Winnamuck mill, new Wilfley tables were being installed, and would be in operation as soon as a new 30-horsepower electric motor is ready for use. (Deseret Evening News, December 1, 1904; Salt Lake Tribune, December 1, 1904; Salt Lake Telegram, December 21, 1904; Salt Lake Mining Review, January 30, 1905, "Bingham's Copper Producers")
The Ohio Copper company leased, and then purchased the inactive Winnamuck mill in lower Bingham and began shipping its ore from the Columbia mine to the Winnamuck mill by way of the Copper Belt railroad. This remained as the company's method of getting its ore to market, until 1907 when Heinze bought both the Bingham Consolidated and Ohio Copper. Soon after controlling both companies, Heinze began using Bingham Consolidated's Mascotte tunnel to transport ore from both mines out to Lark, where a new concentrator mill was built.
(Read more about Ohio Copper Company)
December 22, 1904
The Ohio Copper Co. was remodeling the Winnamuck mill to accept its ore. New Wilfley tables, used in the reduction and concentration of copper ore, had just arrived and would be installed as soon as possible. The new Wilfley tables were being installed, and would be in operation as soon as a new 30-horsepower electric motor is ready for use. (Salt Lake Telegram, December 21, 1904; Salt Lake Herald, December 22, 1904)
January 1, 1905
At the time of its purchase by the Ohio company, the Winnamuck property consisted on 70 acres of mineralized ground. The Ohio Copper reportedly paid $51,500 to complete the sale. The mill was handling about 125 tons of ore per day, all of which was moved by the Copper Belt railroad from the Ohio property higher up in Bingham canyon. The mill was being remodeled to increase capacity to accept 250 tons per day. The former Winnamuck mine properties were not being worked, except by development, i.e. tunnels being dug to identify and access ore veins. (Salt Lake Herald, January 1, 1905)
The Winnamuck mill and the entire Winnamuck group of mining claims, was sold to the Ohio Copper Co. The Winnamuck property was being mined by leasing companies. (Goodwin's Weekly, January 13, 1906)
January 5, 1906
The transfer of ownership of the Winnamuck property was filed with the Salt Lake County recorder's office "yesterday" (January 5) from Frances Dunlevie and others of Ottawa, Canada, to Ohio Copper Company. The purchase price was reported as $48,000. (Salt Lake Tribune, January 6, 1907)
April 11, 1906
The Winnamuck mine was still not in production by its Ohio Copper company owners. Samples of Winnamuck ore had been brought to Salt Lake City assayers to determine the ore's potential metal content and value. Four car loads of ore were shipped during early June 1906, with the ore coming from the Winnamuck mine being cleaned out by the Ohio Copper company, preparing for expansion of operations. (Deseret Evening News, April 11, 1906; Salt Lake Tribune, June 10, 1906)
July 5, 1906
The ore from the Winnamuck mine was found to be too high in zinc content to allow smelting to be completed at a profit to the mining company. (Salt Lake Tribune, July 5, 1906)
By December 1906, when Thomas Weir had his surveyors inspect to property in preparation to taking a "bond" on the property, the mine was found to be badly caved and in need of major rehabilitation work. The shareholders of Ohio Copper company were to meet on December 31, 1906 to discuss Weir's possible bond. (Deseret Evening News, December 11, 1906)
December 18, 1906
Thomas Weir was to purchase the Winnamuck group, including the mill. Pending approval of the sale by shareholders of Ohio Copper, Weir was to lease the property for a period of eight months, paying $2,666.67 per month as rental fee. (Inter-Mountain Republican, December 18, 1906)
April 24, 1907
"Buy the Winnamuck -- Purchase May Mean Immediate Consummation of Other Deals at Bingham. -- Thomas Weir and N. J. Catrow, of Salt Lake have purchased the Winnamuck mining property at Bingham for $50,000. This is the information that came to light yesterday, when Mr. Weir transferred to Mr. Catrow half interest in the property, the latter being the silent partner when the property was first taken over. It is understood that the purchase of the Winnamuck is but one of a number of deals nearing consummation that mean the launching of another big mining project in Bingham. When the Ohio Copper property was taken over by the Heinze interests last November from the Catrows, the Winnamuck was not included in the purchase, as it is nearly a mile from the Ohio mine." (Salt Lake Herald, April 4, 1907)
"New Bingham Company -- By the transfer of a half interest in the Winnamuck mining properties to N. J. Catrow by Thomas Weir, for a stated consideration of $50,000, the report has been started that a new Bingham company is to be formed. Catrow and Weir were the principal owners of the Ohio Copper company, previous to its transfer to the Heinze crowd, and it is presumed that they are now preparing to re-enter the Bingham field to do some development of mining properties, which has yielded them a handsome return on the investments that they have made thus far. This property is located in part of the district that has not been developed to a great extent and it is believed that this property will be the nucleus for the formation of a company with a large amount of territory to be taken in later." (Salt Lake Herald, April 4, 1907)
May 22, 1907
The Ute Copper Company was incorporated on Wednesday (May 22). Its organizers included Thomas Weir, his brother John Weir, Newton Catrow and his brother Henry Catrow, all of whom were previously involved in the Ohio Copper company prior to it being sold to the Heinze interests. The new company owned a 200-ton concentrating mill, and 225 acres of mineralized ground, with a frontage of 4,500 feet along the railroad line in Bingham canyon, allowing for an opening along any point as convenient. The old Weir tunnel was located on the same property, and would be extended and expanded from its present 900-foot depth to become the main workings of the new company. Thomas Weir had purchased the old Winnamuck property in January and had ordered a new compressor to begin opening up new ground. (Salt Lake Herald, May 23, 1907; Salt Lake Tribune, May 23, 1907)
May 23, 1907
Ute Copper company made agreements with the adjacent Bingham Butte Consolidated Mining company to avoid litigation affecting the ground of both companies. Also, the Bingham-Butte company agreed to let the Ute company use the Bingham-Butte company's Copper Hill tunnel, which was 1,000 feet long. "This will give the Ute company facilities for developing its grounds from both ends, the old Winnamuck tunnel, to be known as the Weir tunnel, entering from the opposite side. This tunnel is in over 900 feet, passing through the old stope, from which one and a half million dollars had been taken in the old days."
May 25, 1907
"The Ute Copper company is the latest aspirant for public favor. A Bingham proposition, it includes the Winnamuck and Mohawk claims and controls 226 acres of ground. The ground is not undeveloped, on the contrary the Winnamuck contains some of the oldest workings in Bingham, but it has not been opened in a systematic way. Thomas Weir and Newton J. Catrow are the organizers of the company." (Goodwin's Weekly, May 25, 1907)
"Ohio Copper originally sent the copper ores to the Winnamuck Mill to experiment with reduction of porphyry copper ores before Ohio Copper built its own mills at Lark. Ohio Copper bought the Winnamuck Mill in 1904 and operated it as an experimental mill until 1911." (Oquirrh Mountains Mining and the Environment by Eva J. Hoffman, U. S. Environmental Protection Agency, Denver, April 21, 2005, page 126)
From late 1904 through late 1909, 25,000 tons of ore was sent through the remodeled Winnamuck mill, testing the concentrating methods that were to be used in the new Lark mill. (Deseret Evening News, December 18, 1909)
Ground was broken for the Ohio Copper company mill at Lark in February 1907, and the building was completed by mid February 1908. The structure was completed and foundations for the milling machinery were in place, and some of the machines themselves were on the ground awaiting installation. But financial difficulties for the company delayed installation, and the purchase and delivery of the additional machinery. Throughout 1908 and 1909, there were reports that the mill would very soon be made ready and put into operation when the company and its debt was restructured. The company was reorganized in August 1907, and bonds for the funds to finish construction were offered on the new York and Boston markets. By March 1909 there was sufficient funds to resume construction of both the mill, and to continue the extension of the Mascotte tunnel, which would be used to deliver ore to the new mill. The Mascotte tunnel was connected with the Ohio shaft on March 10th; the tunnel was 14,000 feet long, and connected with the Ohio shaft at 1,400 feet below the Ohio shaft's opening in Bingham canyon. The first section of the Lark mill went into operation in late November 1909, and by late January 1910 there were two units in operation. The third (and last) section went into operation in April 1913.
January 15, 1911
The old Winnamuck mill was leased by Ute Copper company to Werner Ziegler for operation. (Salt Lake Mining Review, January 15, 1911)
(Research was completed to determine Werner Ziegler's previous connection with either the Winnamuck company, or with Ohio Copper. Werner Ziegler was born in Iowa in 1858. He was active as a mine superintendent in the Butte district during the 1890s. He came to Utah in April 1904 to become the general superintendent of Ohio Copper company. In August 1908, he was an independent mining engineer, having completed a report on the Dalton & Lark, Commercial, and Eagle & Blue Bell mines. By January 1910, he had moved to Idaho to become general superintendent of the Sunbeam mine and mill. As noted above, in early 1911, he was leasing the old Winnamuck mill, which other sources note as being closed in 1914. He remained in Utah until some time in 1917 or 1918, at which time he and his family moved to California. The 1920 U. S. census reported that he and his wife and two children were living in Long Beach, California. He and his wife and their grown daughter were at the same residence in the 1940 census. He died in 1947, at age 89.)
The Winnamuck mill, owned by Ute Copper Company, is shown on sheet 2 of the 1907 Sanborn fire insurance map for Bingham, and sheet 2 of the 1913 Bingham map.
July 11, 1926
The Bingham Mines Company purchased the holdings of the Ute Copper Company on "Wednesday" (July 7). The sale included 27 claims in the Winnamuck, Mohawk, Old Channel claims and other holdings. The Ute Copper group encompassed 140 acres. "The Winnamuck is one of the oldest claims in the state. Messrs. Bristol and Daggett erected in 1872 a large Piltz-pattern furnace for the reduction of its ores. Since that time the property has been worked intermittently and has produced a large tonnage of straight shipping and milling ore. It was later acquired by the Ute Copper company, controlled by Thomas Weir. (Bingham Bulletin, July 11, 1926)
(Read more about the Bingham Mines Company)
Bingham Mines Co. became part of the United States company in 1929. The U. S. company took ownership of the Mascotte tunnel in 1951, along with all the other assets of Ohio Copper. Prior to 1951, the U. S. company was paying Ohio Copper a haulage fee to ship their ore via the Mascotte tunnel. But the U. S. company also had to pay Utah Copper (later Kennecott) to ship its ore by railroad from its Niagara tunnel at Copperfield, down to Bingham, where the D&RGW then took the railroad cars to the Midvale smelter. Either way, shipping costs were always a factor for the U. S. company.